Singapore style fried rice noodles (rice vermicelli) is a mildly spicy dish that can be found in the types of Chinese restaurants that also serve congee, chow mein, and fried rice. (Check out those recipes under the Asian category!) There are many different versions of this dish. The way it is served in Malaysia is Very different from how it’s made in North America. But most people agree, that North America makes it best :) This recipe is based on the way that all of my favourite restaurants do it.
Singapore Fried Vermicelli Recipe
makes 2 servings
1/4 of a pound of dried rice vermicelli (Note: This comes in 454 g / 16 ounce packages that contain 4 separated bundles of dried noodles; use 1 bundle)
8 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 cup of Chinese bbq pork (char siu), sliced thinly and then cut into strips (Note: You can buy Chinese bbq pork (char siu) or you can make your own by marinating pork side with store bought Chinese bbq sauce and then roasting it on a rack in the oven at 350 F.)
1/2 large yellow onion, sliced thinly
1 large egg, lightly beaten
3 cloves garlic, minced finely
1 slice fresh ginger, cut into thin strips
1 handful of bean sprouts
1 stalk green onions, green parts only cut into 2 inch long pieces
1 1/2 tbsp of mild yellow curry powder
1/2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1/2 tsp (or to taste) garlic chili sauce or ground red chili pepper
1/2 tsp granulated white sugar
1 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tbsp vegetable oil
Note: If desired, you could add some Chinese powdered chicken bouillon to the sauce for added restaurant flavour.
Bring a kettle of water to a rolling boil. Place the noodles into a large, heatproof bowl. Pour the boiling water over the noodles and allow the noodles to soak for about 5 minutes before heating up the wok. Meanwhile, massage a small pinch of salt into the shrimp and set aside. In a small bowl, make the sauce by mixing together the sesame oil and curry powder until you have a smooth paste. Then mix in the chili paste, soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sugar until well combined. Set aside.
Heat the wok over high heat. When the wok is hot, add the oil and swirl the wok to coat the bottom half with oil. Add the shrimp and give it a few quick stirs until they have just turned pink on both sides. Then push them over to one side and pour the egg into the bottom of the wok. Sprinkle the egg with a pinch of salt. The egg will cook very quickly. Allow it to set for a few seconds, then break it up roughly with your spatula. Before the eggs have finished cooking, push them aside with the shrimp and add the onions and ginger to the wok. Give them a few quick stirs until they start to soften, but are still crisp. Then add the garlic and the sauce. Mix everything together and cook until the sauce is heated through and fragrant. Add the bbq pork. Note that it is very important that the wok is still very hot, but not burnt, at this point. Then lightly strain the noodles out of the hot water and add them to the hot wok. Make sure that the noodles still have some water clinging to them when you add them to the wok, or else the sauce will be too thick. Stir the noodles until everything has been mixed well together. If the noodles aren’t soft enough for your taste, or if the sauce is too thick, you can add a little bit of water to the wok. When the noodles are heated through, add salt to taste. There should not be any liquid in the wok as this is a dry noodle dish. Add the bean sprouts and green onions and mix again until well combined. Dish out and serve immediately.